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Dante's Nine Circles of Hell

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Jillian Simon

on 14 June 2013

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Transcript of Dante's Nine Circles of Hell

Dante's Nine Circles of Hell
Jillian Simon
According to Sindu Menon, Dante Alighieri, known simply as Dante, was born in 1265 in Florence, Italy. He was renowned for his works, including La Divina Commedia (The Divine Comedy), Purgatorio (Purgatory), Paradiso (Paradise), and Inferno (Hell), because they were darker than most other works of literature at the time. Dante's illustration of Hell in Inferno told of the agonizing punishment that awaits all sinners after death. He describes how Hell is made up of nine circles, each for people who have committed certain sins. There is a circle for the lustful, one for the gluttonous, and so on. There is one entrance to Hell, surrounded by a dark forest, and within Hell, immense pain and suffering occur to the center of the earth. The entrance to Hell is surrounded by a dark forest, in which Dante gets lost in the beginning if Inferno. Dante aften makes references to other works and to other authors; poet Virgil is a character in Inferno, and the character helps Dante and explains the different parts of Hell to Dante. Dante's allusion to the well known poet made audiences more eager to read Inferno, because many people were big fans of Virgil, and were interested in reading a story in which he was a character (Menon,1).

Gates of Hell
First Circle
Second Circle
Third Circle
The Dark Wood
The dark wood is the forest that surrounds the entrance to Hell.
The entrance to the immense pain and suffering that lies within
Dante finds himself lost in a forest where he comes across the entrance to Hell
According to Guy P. Raffa, the first circle of Dante's Hell was limbo, a part of Hell at the rim of the entrance, This was for those people who had never sinned, but whose souls were not saved. These people were not worthy of heaven and eternal bliss in the eyes of God, but were not considered evil enough to be sent into the depths of Hell, because they were not sinners (Raffa 1).
"Dante's Inferno- Dark Wood" The University of Texas at Austin. 2013.
The second circle of Hell is for the lustful and those who commit adultery. It is here that Dante realizes just how fine the line which separates lust from love truly is. Although this is the second circle, it is the first circle in which an unforgiven sin is punished (Raffa 2).
The third circle punishes the gluttonous. In this circle, Dante suggests that gluttony may be more complex than traditionally believed. He acknowledges the idea that there is more to gluttony than just eating and drinking an excessive amount (Raffa 3).
Fourth Circle
The fourth circle of Hell punishes greed.This circle is for those who exhibit extreme greed for money and material things, and those who spend money extravagantly (Raffa 4).
"Gates of Hell Open" N.d. Photograph. A-GC Wallpaper, 2012
Fifth Circle
The fifth circle is where wrath and sullenness is punished.Both wrath (extreme rage), and sullenness (moroseness), were considered to be equally sinful. One who expresses extreme anger was thought to be just as wicked as those who express deep sorrow (Raffa 5).
Sixth Circle
The sixth circle punishes those who commit heresy. Heresy is anything that goes against the church or against Christianity, especially the denial of the soul's immortality. Those who were not Christian were not considered worthy of heaven, and neither were those who did not believe in an afterlife (Raffa 6).
Seventh Circle
The seventh circle of Hell was for many different sins. Whether one committed violence, suicide, blasphemy, murder, sodomy, or usury (lending money with unreasonably high interest rates), he or she belonged here. Dante is told by poet Virgil that violence can take one of three forms: to oneself (suicide), to others (, or to God (blasphemy) (Raffa 7).
The poet in front of the circles of Hell described in his famous poem
Dante Alighieri. N.d. Photograph. Sky-Fairy Myth Believing Cretins. 7 Nov. 2011. Web. 15 May 2013.
Eighth Circle
The eighth circle of Hell punishes lying and falsity. Fraud is considered unholy and nearly the wrost possible sin (Raffa 8).
Ninth Circle
The ninth and final circle of Hell punishes treachery and betrayal. Considered to be the worst and most evil sin, treachery is the lowest circle of Hell, and the closest to the Devil himself (Raffa 9).
Works Cited
"Dante's Inferno - Main Page." Dante's Inferno - Main Page. University of Texas at Austin, n.d. Web. 12 May 2013.
Gates of Hell Open. N.d. Photograph. Www.wallgc.com. A-GC Wallpaper, 17 Nov. 2012. Web. 14 May 2013.
Dante Alighieri. N.d. Photograph. Sky-Fairy Myth Believing Cretins. 7 Nov. 2011. Web. 15 May 2013.
Dante's Inferno- Dark Wood. N.d. Photograph. Danteworlds.laits.utexas.edu. The University of Texas at Austin. Web. 14 May 2013.
"Fraud, the Aged and the Eighth Circle of Hell" The Cotton Boll Conspiracy. South Cometh the Whirlwind, 2010
Dante and Virgil encountering the eigth circle of Hell
Fraud, the Aged and the Eighth Circle of Hell. N.d. Photograph. The Cotton Boll Conspiracy. South Cometh the Whirlwind, 27 Sept. 2010. Web. 16 May 2013.
Ayris, Ian. Pulp Metal Magazine 2013
A map of Dante's nine circles of Hell
What lies at the bottom of Hell
"The Eighth Inner Circle of Hell (Ninth Tranch)" Flickr.com 2006
The Eighth Inner Circle of Hell (Ninth Tranch). 2006. Photograph. Flickr.com. 3 Sept. 2006. Web. 16 May 2013.
Menon, Sindhu. "Dante Alighieri." - Biography and Works. Search Texts, Read Online. Discuss. Jalic Inc., 2003. Web. 19 May 2013.
Ayris, Ian. N.d. Photograph. Pulp Metal Magazine. Wordpress.com. Web. 16 May 2013.
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